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Rolls RS81B

Commercial AM/FM tuner

Item # 172RS81B

This rack-mountable tuner adds terrestrial AM/FM radio to your commercial sound system.

This rack-mountable tuner adds terrestrial AM/FM radio to your commercial sound system.

California customers:
Please click here for your Proposition 65 warning.

Item # 172RS81B

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Since 1974

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About the Rolls RS81B

Tune in

The rack-mountable Rolls RS81B lets you add terrestrial radio to your commercial sound system. It features up to 30 AM or FM presets for saving favorite stations, and a handy LED meter that indicates signal strength at a glance. The tuner's large LCD display shows RDS (Radio Data System) information when it is available.

Tune in

The rack-mountable Rolls RS81B lets you add terrestrial radio to your commercial sound system. It features up to 30 AM or FM presets for saving favorite stations, and a handy LED meter that indicates signal strength at a glance. The tuner's large LCD display shows RDS (Radio Data System) information when it is available.

You can connect the tuner to a mixer or preamp via balanced XLR or unbalanced RCA outputs. A 1/8" output with dedicated volume control lets you plug in a pair of headphones for private monitoring.


Product highlights:

  • up to 30 AM and FM presets
    • presets are retained when power is turned off
  • large LCD digital display with RDS (Radio Data System) information
  • auto search locates available stations
  • FM tuning range: 87.5-108MHz
  • AM tuning range: 530-1710 kHz (10 kHz increments)
  • LED meter indicates signal strength
  • stereo separation: 28dB
  • selectable mono/stereo operation
  • remote included
  • balanced stereo XLR output
  • unbalanced stereo RCA output
  • front panel 1/8" TRS output for headphones
    • dedicated headphone level adjustment dial
  • barrel connector for FM antenna
  • spring clips for FM loop antenna
Dimensions and warranty:

What's in the box:

  • Rack-mount AM/FM tuner
  • IR Remote control (installed CR2025 battery)
  • 71" Power cord (IEC 3-pin)
  • AM Loop antenna (attached 33" bare-ended wire)
  • 79" FM dipole antenna
  • Two 300 ohm to 75 ohm adapters
  • 2' Stereo RCA patch cord
  • Quickstart guide

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Crutchfield response

<< >>

More details on the Rolls RS81B

Russ B.

Product Research


Overview: The Rolls RS81B is a professional full-featured AM/FM digital tuner in a single rack-space, designed for commercial and educational applications. It features both automatic and manual tuning and can store up to 30 favorite station presets.

Tuner: The RS81B features a PLL (Phase Lock Loop) Quartz Synthesizer AM/FM Tuner with RDS. Stations can be tuned in either Automatically or Manually and can be stored in one of 30 station memory presets.

  • RDS: The tuner is RDS (Radio Data System) compatible and can display additional broadcast information such as the name of the station and the name of the program. Both an AM loop antenna and an FM wire antenna are included with the tuner.
  • PTY (Program Type Search): This feature lets you to search for broadcast types like News, Weather, Sports, Music genres, and more.
  • TA (Traffic Announcement): This will automatically search for and stop on "traffic" or "travel" stations that are broadcasting RDS information.
  • FM Frequency Range: 87.5 MHz - 108 MHz
  • AM Frequency Range: 530 kHz - 1710 kHz (10kHz increments)

Controls: Operation of the AM/FM tuner can be done from the front-panel controls or the included wireless IR remote control. Controls on both include; number buttons for accessing the 30 station presets, Tuning +/- buttons, a Memory button for storing stations, Band, a Stereo/Mono button, and a Display button for accessing any RDS information. Stations can be "scan-searched" or their frequency directly entered using Direct mode. A front-panel signal strength meter will indicate the general strength of an incoming FM or AM signal.

Outputs: The RS81B includes a stereo pair of balanced XLR jacks and a pair of unbalanced RCA jacks for outputting the signal to an amplifier, mixing board, or receiver.

Headphone: A front-panel 3.5mm (1/8") headphone output is provided, along with a Headphone Level control.

Sleep: This feature allows the tuner to automatically stop playing and power off after a pre-determined amount of time. The Sleep time can be increased/decreased in 10 minute increments up to a maximum delay time of 90 minutes.

Mounting: The RS81B comes ready for table-top or shelf mounting, but can be rack-mounted if desired using the built-in rack-ears. The 4 feet can be removed for rack mounting, making the tuner a standard 1U (1.75") in height.

Voltage Selection&Powering: A rear-panel slide switch is used to change the voltage selection for the internal power supply, depending on the country the tuner will be used in. Choices are 115V (110-120V) and 230V (220-240V). A rear-panel, dual set-screw wire input (+24VDC) is provided as an optional method of powering the tuner when AC Mains power isn't available. A +24VDC power supply (sold separately) will be required.


  • FM Section:
    • FM Frequency Range (US): 87.5 MHz - 108 MHz
    • Image Rejection: 53dB
    • Signal to Noise Ratio (@ 1mV Mono): 52dB
    • Distortion (Mono/Stereo): < 0.3%
    • Stereo Separation: 28 dB
    • Auto Scan Sensitivity: 23dB
    • Antenna Input Impedance: 75Ω
  • AM Section:
    • AM Frequency Range (US): 520 kHz - 1710 kHz
    • AM Frequency Range (Europe): 522 kHz - 1611kHz
    • Usable Sensitivity: 28dB
    • Auto Scan Sensitivity: 41dB
    • Signal to Noise Ratio (@5mV/M): 46dB
    • Image Rejection: 42dB
  • General:
    • Input Voltage: 100 - 240 VAC, 50/60 Hz
    • Dimensions: Width - 19.0", Height - 1.83" (1.75" w/feet removed), Depth - 10.0" (incl. power cord)
    • Weight: 7.1 lbs.

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Customer Q&A

2 questions already asked

Does this have FM mute that tuners use to have? I need for the receiver to mute when the station signal drops, or mutes inbetween stations so you don't hear the fm hiss/noise.
[ s-allen  Jan 14, 2022 ]
2 answers
As far as I know it does not mute. When the signal gets weak or bad... you hear it in all its hissing glory. Muting between stations it does (if you hold the tuning selector up or down for one second it searches for the next station in silence) since many of the stations that I listen to are presets the transition is pretty much seamless between them. But if a station is weak you're going to hear that; especially AM. But I'm super pleased that this has AM capabilities. I think that might be more rare in the future. It's a good tuner and if you've got a strong antenna (I use a coaxial television antenna) you will more than likely be pleased. Hope this helps.
[ Kelly  Jan 18, 2022 ]
Unfortunately, I have not found a way to mute interstation hiss and noise.....Tuning between several weak stations does NOT mute the audio like the more "mature" Marantz or Sherwood units of days gone by!!:( NOT to sell the Rolls short --- it has VERY good sensitivity on both AM and FM.....I use mine as an off-air studio monitor for my Part 15 AM station on 570kHz. It's exceptionally quiet, even with my "flea-power"!! My take....unless you REALLY need the interstation muting ---- go for the Rolls!! I think you'll be happy!! Good Luck!
[ Dale  Jan 18, 2022 ]
Does this, or any other tuner you sell, have HD Radio? Many mention RDS but not HD Radio. Is that going by the wayside? I see many stations in my area (Nashville) and would like to take advantage of them. -- thanks, BL
[ Brian  Dec 13, 2021 ]
2 answers
Sorry, This tuner does not receive HD.
[ Scott  Dec 18, 2021 ]
Well I can't answer for what type of tuners that Crutchfield has available but I can talk about this particular tuner. And no, it's got no HD radio capabilities. It's just a good old-fashioned quartz tuner. It is mainly for commercial use but I have it in my home system since I do tend to listen to a lot of radio. And I'll say that the output is very good and if you've got a good coaxial connection with a strong antenna you'll be pleased with the service. (Radio is pretty spotty where I live so I'm pleased that it performs as well as it does). Given the trend of online streaming and everybody having a smart phone and the ability to listen to music (and radio stations) online, I really don't foresee any advancement in radio HD. Actually in 10 years you would probably be hard pressed to even FIND a tuner at this price or any other; everything will be an app. So, if you want a good commercial quality tuner I highly recommend this one, but you can always look on Ebay (and you'll be disappointed trust me). Hope this helps. //Kelly
[ Kelly  Dec 16, 2021 ]

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